What if Congress had bailed out the technology industry every time they needed money?

By Eric Lundquist  |  Posted 2008-12-04

Do the Big Three auto companies really need $34 Billion? What happened to all those billions poured into the banking industry? Why do those banks with all that money still feel compelled to try to throw new charges onto my account at every opportunity? Are those big car companies and big banks really too big to fail? What if Congress had always been willing to bail out any technology company that borrowed too much, spent too much on corporate perks and was just generally wasteful with its cash? Maybe the world we would be living in would be something like this:

Thank goodness that we still have Burroughs, Sperry Rand, Control Data, Honeywell, General Electric, RCA and NCR to compete with IBM in the mainframe business. I mean those seven sisters kept IBM honest and without them the mainframe business might have deteriorated into small systems sitting on your desktop or lap. I mean those big mainframe companies were simply too big to fail.

And of course we should be happy that the Feds kept Digital Equipment, Data General, Prime Computer and Wang Labs going. The minicomputers were the workhorses that kept the engineering departments and lots of small and medium businesses growing. Without the current vibrant, government-sponsored minicomputer industry what would all those DEC VAX programmers be doing?

And I'm mighty glad the federal money held back the user interface tide that was decidedly shifting to a graphical user interface model. Why do you need graphics when you have a nice green screen with really easy to remember commands? To think that computer users might want to point and click instead of using easy to remember commands like aansi.sysnsi.sys, bootcfg and the ever popular tracert. DOS was simply too big to fail.

But wait, there's more. Without government money there would be no more U.S. Memories, Altair computers and of course that great big government funded Comdex computer show each year. Those operations were all simply too big to fail and how would the tech industry manage to struggle along without them?

I think you get the idea.

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